Principles of evidence based practice

Before i expand on the principles of evidence based enterprise architecture it is important to highlight the work behind evidence based practice and in particular the wikipedia page on the subject. Evidence based enterprise architecture is just another evidence based practice and as such it shares all the common features and benefits. Evidence based practices now cover a wide range of subjects such as health, education, management and design. The wikipedia page offers insights into methods and strategies as well as background information. I want to cite three sections from the wikipedia article as i think they set out a good foundation and I will then adapt these to fit the context of EBEA.

Source: Wikipedia Evidence Based Design


In the first instance EBD methodology could be divided in four subsequent steps:

  • reviewing existing research literature to select significant findings and recommendations;
  • matching referenced findings with data gathered from site visits, surveys results, subject matter experts;
  • prediciting the outcomes of design decisions;
  • tracking the positive outcomes for design implementation.

Meta-analysis template

In his book “Evidence-based Policy: A Realistic Perspective”, Ray Pawson (2006) suggests a meta-analysis template that may be applicable for EBD. By using such a protocol the field will be able to provide designers with a credible source for evidence-based design. Systematic review process should follow six essential steps:

1. Formulating the review question
2. Identifying and collecting evidence
3. Appraising the quality of the evidence
4. Extracting and processing the data
5. Systematizing the data
6. Disseminating the findings

Conceptual model for the application of Evidence Based Design

Hamilton (“Four Levels of Evidence-Based Practice”, The AIA Journal of Architecture, 2006

  • Level 1
    • analysing the literature in the field in order to follow the related environmental researches
    • reading the meaning of the evidence in the relationships to the project
  • Level 2
    • foreshadowing the expected outcomes of design decisions upon the general readings
    • measuring the results through the analysis of the implications, the construction of a chain of logic connection from decision and future outcome, in order to reduce arbitrary decisions
  • Level 3
    • reporting the results publicly, writing or speaking about results, and moving in this way information beyond design team
    • subjecting methods and results to others who may or may not agree with the findings
  • Level 4
    • publishing the findings in reviewed journals
    • collaborating with academic or social scientists

I think it is very clear from the quotations above that evidence based practice can be applied to a range of activities within enterprise architecture using these core principles as a guide.

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